ISSUES IN THE ENVIRONMENT
1. SOUTH AFRICA INVESTMENT CONFERENCE 2023
1.1. Cabinet acknowledged the attainment of the R1.2 trillion investment mobilisation goal that was set by President Cyril Ramaphosa in 2018. Investment commitments made at the 5th South Africa Investment Conference enabled government to exceed the set target by R300 billion.
1.2. Although much work still needs to be done to ensure that South Africa reclaims its place as an investment destination of first preference, the achievement of the R1.2 trillion investment mobilisation target confirms the confidence of domestic and international investors in South Africa’s value proposition.
1.3. To date, 82 projects to the value of R170.7 billion have been completed; 79 projects to the value R514 billion under construction, and 28 projects to the value of R132.9 billion in the early stages of implementation. These projects include building of new factories, purchasing equipment, sinking mine shafts and rolling out broadband infrastructure.
1.4. Government is hard at work to address investment limiting challenges facing the country as the task of mobilising R2 trillion in investment on the second round of investment mobilisation commences.
2. INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
2.1 Cabinet reaffirms South Africa’s participation in the International Criminal Court (ICC), and confirms that we remain a signatory to the Rome Statute.
2.2 South Africa will continue to advocate for strengthening institutions of global governance, and we continue to campaign for equal and consistent application of international law.
2.3 The President appointed an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) that is chaired by the Deputy President that is considered various options on the matter.
3. AFRICAN CONTINENTAL FREE TRADE AREA BUSINESS FORUM
3.1 South Africa co-hosted the first AfCFTA Business Forum in Cape Town from 16 -18 April 2023 with the aim of accelerating the implementation of the AfCFTA and activating trade and investments. Approximately 1000 delegates from across the African continent attended.
3.2 The deliberations over the three-day event focused on strategic economic sectors such as automotive, pharmaceutical, agriculture and agro-processing, leather and footwear, transport and logistics infrastructure, and the digital economy, including digital trade.
3.3 Boosting Africa’s productive capacity in all sectors of the economy was widely recognized as a prerequisite for the successful implementation of the AfCFTA. The private sector was called upon to identify opportunities to increase investment in regional value chains and development of local manufacturing capacities to increase intra-Africa trade of products and services made in Africa.
4. ELECTRICITY DEMAND MANAGEMENT CAMPAIGN
4.1 One of the easiest ways we can all help to keep the lights on is by lowering
electricity usage, especially during periods of high energy consumption, typically from
5pm to 9pm, as part of Demand Side Management initiatives. By lowering our consumption we can create a win-win situation that both reduces pressure on the power grid and saves households money without affecting business productivity or quality of life.
4.2 Cabinet calls on everyone to assist in saving electricity by using it sparingly while Eskom works with Independent Power Producers to bring new capacity online.
4.3 Demand Side Management measures are a global phenomenon and have proved effective in reducing peak demand and promoting energy conservation.
4.4 We have demonstrated this during the 2010 World Cup. The aim is that collectively we must save electricity by switching off non-essential appliances, using gas to cook, installing energy efficient light bulbs, and switching off appliances like geysers when not in use.
4.5 The target is to save about 1000 MW of power, which is equivalent to one stage of load shedding.
4.6 Cabinet notes that a number of large customers are already participating in the Eskom’s Demand Side initiatives, and calls on all stakeholders from business, industry and residential customers to heed the call and join the Demand Side Management campaign.
5. ACCESS TO WATER
5.1 Cabinet welcomed the opening of the completed Spring Grove Water Treatment Plant in Rosetta and the Bruntville Reservoir as part of the Greater Mpofana Bulk Water Supply Scheme in Mooi River, uMgungundlovu District of KwaZulu-Natal.
5.2 This project brings reliable water supply and dignity to 130 000 residents in thedistrict, along with the social and economic benefits that flow from the supply of water.
5.3 Cabinet also noted that progress is being made on the Giyani Water Project, with 24out of 55 villages identified to benefit from the project will soon have water.
6. ELECTORAL AMENDMENT ACT
6.1 Cabinet acknowledged the signing into law of the Electoral Amendment Bill of 2022 by President Ramaphosa. The updated legislation provides the legal certainty required to prepare the country for the 2024 General Election.
6.2 The amended Electoral Act provides for the inclusion of independentcandidates as contesters to elections in the National Assembly and provincial
6.3 The Electoral Amendment Bill expands electoral participation and leadership choicesfor the citizens of South Africa beyond political parties in the National Assembly and provincial legislatures.
7. FREEDOM DAY
7.1 The various Freedom Day celebrations held across the country yesterday, 27 April 2023 reminded us that our common national identity, is built on respect for each other and our passion for and pride in our country.
7.2 The national Freedom Day commemoration, which took place at Dr Kenneth Kaunda District Municipality in the North West Province, was convened under the theme “Consolidating and Safeguarding Democratic Gains”.
7.3 Freedom Day 2023 coincides with the 27th anniversary of the enactment of the Constitution and marks 29 Years of Freedom.
8. INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS
8.1 President Cyril Ramaphosa hosted President Hage Geingob of Namibia during a State Visit aimed at further strengthening the deep historical ties shared by our two nations.
8.2 Discussions between the two Heads of State and Ministerial delegations centred on bilateral relations, collaboration between our two countries on global issues and cooperation in trade and investment. This partnership will be further cemented by the hosting of a business forum between companies from the two countries in Namibia later this year.
8.3 President Cyril Ramaphosa hosted Finnish President Sauli Väinämö Niinistö on 25 April for a State Visit. Relations between South Africa and Finland are deep rooted and born out of Finland’s strong support for South Africa’s liberation movements.
8.4 Relations between the two countries have grown steadily since 1994, with Finland investing more than R2 billion in South Africa in the last three years.
9. EVACUATION OF SOUTH AFRICANS AND OTHER NATIONS FROM SUDAN
9.1 Cabinet welcomed a report setting out the complex but successful evacuations of South Africans from Sudan where conflict is impacting on citizens and nationals from other countries.
9.2 The Department of International Relations and the South African Air Force worked together to bring South Africans to safety.
9.3 The South African evacuation mission also assisted nationals from Angola, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Brazil.
9.4 Cabinet expressed its appreciation to the government of Egypt for supporting our evacuation mission and the United Arab Emirates for evacuating one South Africa who is now being assisted by our mission in Jeddah to return home. There are 5 South Africans who are still in Sudan because at the time of the evacuation they had not made contact with our embassy. Cabinet is appealing to South Africans to always notify our Missions of their presence when travelling abroad including for holiday purposes.
9.5 Cabinet reiterated the call for an end to hostilities in Sudan and calls for peace and calm among the parties involved in the conflict, in keeping with the African Union (AU) objective of silencing the guns on the continent.
10. INVESTMENT IN HIGHER EDUCATION FACILITIES
On 24 April 2023 Minister Nzimande unveiled two buildings at the University of Western Cape (UWC) funded through the Department’s Infrastructure and Efficiency Grant, and Sibusiso Bengu Development Programme:
a. New Education Faculty Building (known as the South Campus Education Precinct Project) - R268.659 million funded through both the IEG and SB-DP was used to upgrade an existing building that previously housed the Chemistry, Mathematics, Computer Sciences and Statistics Faculty.
b. Unibell Residence – R670 million funded through the IEG and DBSA loan for the construction of a 2720 bed student housing project consisting of four floors per block, with six blocks constructed on a site in Belhar, adjoining the main Bellville campus.
The Unibell Residence project was made possible through collective effort with the Department’s IEG contribution of R235 million (35%) and UWC’s own funds (30%) augmented by debt financing from the DBSA (35%).
On 21 April 2023, Minister Nzimande unveiled two buildings and an IT Hub in Mthatha at the Walter Sisulu University WSU funded through the Infrastructure and Efficiency Grant (IEG) and Sibusiso Bengu Development Programme (SB-DP). These buildings are located on the Nelson Mandela Drive and Zamukulungisa delivery sites:
a. East Teaching Mall - R25.971 million funded through the IEG was used to complete the refurbishment of 19 lecture halls and 13 tutorial rooms for teaching and learning at the Nelson Mandela Drive delivery site.
b. Student Residence – R52.799 million funded through the IEG was used to complete the refurbishment of KTC and KGB student residences with a total of 314 student beds at the Nelson Mandela Drive delivery site.
c. IT Hub – R14.135 million funded through the SB-DP and used to complete the construction of new IT hub which will serve as the multifunctional space for students and lecturers at the Zamukulungisa delivery sites.
11. CABINET DECISIONS
All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.
1. Mr Siyabonga Charles Zama as Deputy –Director General (DDG): Informal Settlements Upgrading and Emergency Housing in the Department of Human Settlements.
2. Ms Zenkosi Dumile Mhlongo as DDG: Research Policy, Strategy, and Planning in the Department of Human Settlements.
3. Mr Jabulani Hugh Hlatshwayo as the DDG: Information and Communication Technology in the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development.
4. Mr Dipepenene Serage as DDG: Agriculture Production, Health and Food Safety and Disaster Management in the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development.
5. Ms Hlengiwe Bhengu as Chief Financial Officer at the Department of International Relations and Cooperation.
6. Ms Lucy Bele as CFO in the Department of Human Settlements.
Cabinet also concurred with the following appointments
Board of Directors of the Water Research Commission
(a) Dr Rethabile Melamu (Chairperson);
(b) Dr Harrison Pienaar (Deputy Chairperson);
(c) Prof Nnenesi Kgabi
(d) Mr Willem Baird
(e) Adv. Reinette Mary Rosey;
(f) Prof Aldo Stroebel;
(g) Ms Zama Portia Dlamini;
(h) Dr Tendai Sawunyama;
(i) Ms Nkuli Mxenge-Mayende; and
(j) Ms Megan Schalkwyk
Board of the National Lotteries Commission
(a) Ms Beryl Ferguson;
(b) Ms Precious Mvulane;
(c) Mr Willie Hofmeyr;
(d) Mr Tembinkosi Bonakele;
(e) Mr Lionel October; and
(f) Ms Irene Ramafola
Members of the Mine Health and Safety Council
(a) Mr David Msiza (Chairperson);
(b) Mr Xolile Mbonambi;
(c) Dr Lindiwe Ndelu;
(d) Mr Divhudza Victor Mahwasane;
(e) Ms Constance Titi Kekana (Alternate Member);
(f) Dr Dipalesa Mobokoto (Alternate Member);
(g) Mr Mthokozisi Zondi;
(h) Mr Thabo Ngwenya (Alternate Member);
(i) Mr Masibulele Naki;
(j) Ms Naledi Tsipane (Alternate Member);
(k) Ms Melanie Roy;
(l) Mr Victor Radebe (Alternate Member);
(m) Mr Nicolaas Van Rooyen;
(n) Mr J White (Alternate Member);
(o) Adv. Paul Mardon;
(p) Mr Johan Du Toit Boning (Alternate Member);
(q) Mr Phuthuma Manyathi;
(r) Mr Gabriel Nkosi (Alternate Member);
(s) Dr Thuthula Balfour;
(t) Mr Vijay Nundall;
(u) Mr Stuart Sepetla;
(v) Mr Ronald Mafoko;
(w) Mr Joseph Phakathi (Alternate Member);
(x) Ms Letisha van der Berg; and
(y) Dr Joseph Matjila (Alternate Member).
A. UPCOMING EVENTS
1. Africa Month
1.1. South Africa will mark Africa Month and Africa Day in May 2023, along with the rest of the continent. On 25 May 2023, Africa will celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Organisations of African Unity (OAU).
1.2. The month is an opportunity to promote African unity, deeper regional integration and recommit Africa to a common destiny. Cabinet calls on all South Africans to work together and strive to build a better, more united and prosperous continent.
2. National Orders
2.1. President Cyril Ramaphosa will bestow National Orders on South Africans and eminent foreign nationals ton 28 April 2023. National Orders are the highest awards that our country bestows on its citizens and eminent foreign nationals who have contributed towards the advancement of democracy and have made a significant impact on improving the lives of South Africans.
2.2. The National Orders also recognise the contributions made by individuals towards building a non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous South Africa as envisaged in our Constitution.
3. Budget Votes
3.1 In May, government departments will present their Budget Votes to Parliament.
3.2 Budget Votes combine a review of a department’s performance during the past financial year as well as its plans for implementing the commitments set out by the President in the State of the Nation Address.
3.3. Cabinet calls on citizens to closely follow the budget votes to see how respective departments will prioritise service delivery in the period ahead.
3.4 On 4 May 2023, the Minister of Human Settlements Ms Mmamoloko Kubayi will lead an Imbizo and Service Fair in Soweto as part of the build-up to their Budget Vote on 10 May 2023.
3.5. This event will address challenges in the Human Settlement portfolio local residents are experiencing as well as promote sector programmes which benefit communities from this portfolio.
4. Workers’ Day
4.1 Workers Day will be commemorated on Monday, 01 May 2023, in recognition of the pivotal role that workers play in building the economy and society envisaged in the National Development Plan.
4.2 Workers’ Day allows us to reflect on the gains workers have secured during 29 years of freedom and to identify the challenges workers face in a constrained economy.
4.3 It is also a day for us to recommit ourselves to doing all we can to create opportunities for the millions of South African workers who are unemployed and are unable to exercise their skills or to provide for themselves and those around them.
4.4 Government’s commitment to improving workplace conditions and equity in the labour market is reflected in significant amendments to the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act and Employment Equity Act which were recently signed into law by President Ramaphosa.
5. World Press Freedom Day
5.1 South Africa will join the rest of the world in commemorating World Press Freedom Day on 3 May 2023. This day provides us with an opportunity to celebrate and assess the state of media freedom in our society as well as the challenges faced by media and the role played by rapidly evolving media in our society.
5.2 A free and independent media is an integral part of any democracy, and we will continue to ensure that the media are free to report accurately, fairly and independently.
6. Netball World Cup
6.1 With less than 100 days to the start of the first Netball World Cup to be held on African soil from 28 July to 6 August, Cabinet calls on the nation to roll out the red carpet once again as host nation for an international event.
6.2 With the Netball World Cup taking place in Cape Town, South Africa will build on its proven track record in successful mega-events including the recent Formula E Cape Town ePrix.
6.3 Lessons learned from hosting these events have been integrated into our planning to ensure that sporting fans and visitors to our shores have an enjoyable and safe stay.
6.4 Cabinet calls on everyone to support the Netball Fridays campaign which encourages everyone to dress up in their supporter’s outfits every Friday to show their support for the South African National Netball team who are known as the Spar Proteas.
7. 16th meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP 16) to the Basel Convention
7.1 South Africa will participate at COP 16 to the Basel Convention to be held in Geneva, Switzerland from 01 – 02 May 2023.
7.2 The Basel Convention was put in place to protect human health and the environmentagainst the adverse effects that may result from the movement of hazardous wastes. South Africa acceded to this convention on 5 May 1994.
7.3 Cabinet has approved South Africa’s negotiating mandate for the COP 16 to the Basel Convention.
7.4 COP 16 to will be held back to back with the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in Internal Trade.
7.5 This treaty promotes shared responsibility and cooperation among parties in in the international trade of hazardous chemicals. South Africa ratified these treaties because they have positive implications for the environment and human health.
Cabinet extended its congratulations and well wishes to:
- The family and friends of jazz legend Hugh Masekela. Bra Hugh was posthumously inducted into the Ertegun Hall of Fame in New York. The late South African musician joins inductees such as Louis Armstrong, Nat “King” Cole and Miles Davis.
- Cabinet also acknowledged HOT 102.7FM for being honoured as a finalist in four categories at the 2023 New York Festival’s Radio Awards in the United States, which celebrates industry players from over 30 countries.
Cabinet expressed condolences to the family and friends of:
- Mr Harry Belafonte, the internationally acclaimed American singer, actor and activist. He was an erudite campaigner for civil rights of African Americans and he brought global attention to anti-apartheid struggle.
- He played a crucial role in launching the international careers of South African musicians Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masekela, which exposed the world to South African melodies, harmonies and rhythms which communicated all dimensions of life in South Africa, and centrally, our struggle for freedom.
- Mr Tiego Moseneke, a prominent lawyer, businessman and former student activist.
- Mr Mbulelo Musi, a former uMkhonto We Sizwe operative and Commissar, part of the June 16 1976 activists, a highly regarded and accomplished public servant, and veteran communicator who served government with distinction.
- Former Free State Premier Beatrice Marshoff, who selflessly served the people of South Africa in many roles throughout her long and distinguished career.
- Loyiso Nkohla, a community activist who dedicated his life to improve the lives of under-serviced communities of the Western Cape townships. He was killed while conducting community facilitation for the relocation of people residing along the railway line in preparation of the restoration of the Central Line train service. Cabinet directed law enforcement to bring to book those responsible for the murder of Mr Nkohla. Cabinet extends well wishes for the speedy recovery of those who were injured during the incident.
- The families of Nqobizitha Zulu, 5, and his friend Tshiamo Ramanye, 6, whose bodies were found mutilated in Soweto on Thursday 20 April 2023. Cabinet condemns the gruesome murders in the strongest possible terms and calls on the public to assist the police in finding the perpetrators. If anyone has any information they are urged to contact the Crime Stop Line at 08600 10111.
- Eight members of the Memela family from the Imbali Township in Pietermaritzburg who were shot dead as well as two women who were visitors in their home on Friday 21 April 2023.
- Cabinet commends the police for speedily tracking down the alleged suspects, and for recovering three firearms. One suspect was shot dead in an exchange of fire with police on Friday 21 April 2023. A second suspect was wounded and taken into custody and one fled.
Mr Tyrone Seale – Acting Government Spokesperson
Mobile: 083 5757 440
Issued by: Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)